In 1922, César Geoffray (1901-1972) began to bring youth to good music by the practice of public chant. Just after the Second World War, he devoted himself to the organization of choirs in the French scouts and founded in 1947 the Movement A Coeur Joie International. Over the years, this movement has grown considerably. Several hundred choirs from all countries, tens of thousands of members currently part of the Movement A Coeur Joie.
Choir A Cœur Joie of Beirut
In Lebanon, in 1961, Father Bernard Mathieu (1912-1986), a Jesuit freshly arrived in Egypt, founded the Movement A Coeur Joie of Lebanon and Chorale A Coeur Joie of Beirut (ACJ). Thanks to the tireless enthusiasm of Father Mathieu, the Movement A Coeur Joie Lebanese had until 1975 several other mixed voices choirs , women voices and cantilenas chanteries for children.
Father Mathieu struck with hemiplegia attack in 1971, during a concert. Then Tino Fargialla took the torch thus the choir has maintained its activities and concerts until 1975. From that moment, the choir has worked sporadically at the option of the situation. Despite the difficulties, these years have still been punctuated by many events: concerts Scout gatherings, Christmas concerts, entertainment Masses.
Paul-René Safa is a veteran of the early hours of the Chorale A Coeur Joie Beirut (ACJ).
A self-taught musician, he is also the co-founder with Marie Gabrielle Pharès, the Arabesque Vocal Ensemble, which he directed from 1972 to 1980. During the lull of 1977, choirs A Coeur Joie and Arabesque merged to give a joint concert under the direction of Father Matthew and Paul-René. Since 1998, Paul-René also holds the reins of the orchestra Barock Ensemble Kulturzentrum. In June 1999, he led 250 choristers in Darius Milhaud “Cantate de la Paix” , a cappella choral work, at the closing concert “First Chorégies of Beirut” organized by Mrs. Mireille Aouad under the aegis of “L’Agenda Culturel” .
In late 1999, Tino Fargialla Tino offered himself a sabbatical year leaving the direction of ACJ to Paul-René; then again in 2003 due to illness, then, after he abandoned, from 2009 until today…
Paul-René is also chairman of Jeunesses Musicales of Lebanon (JML) since 2006 and leader of the Orchestra of the JML.